Couple use diamond wedding to thank Sunderland Royal Hospital staff after woman collapsed with heart attack in street

A woman who collapsed on the street after suffering a heart attack has celebrated her diamond wedding anniversary by raising funds for the hospital unit that cared for her.

By Sophie Brownson
Wednesday, 24 July, 2019, 06:00

Joyce and Alan Dunn, from Houghton, celebrated 60 years of happiness on June 27.

The pair married aged 21 in 1959 and went on to have daughter Joyce Wilson, two granddaughters, two great-granddaughters and one great-grandson.

Over the years they have enjoyed walking and dancing together, but in August 2017 their lives were turned upside down when Joyce collapsed suddenly from a heart attack.

Alan and Joyce Dunn have celebrated their Diamond Wedding anniversary.

The former machinist went for a walk, but only made it to the top of the street before becoming ill.

She was helped by members of the public who called an ambulance and was taken to Sunderland Royal Hospital.

There, doctors found she suffered a bleed on the brain and Joyce was put into an induced coma for four days.

Then in February 2018 Joyce underwent a triple heart bypass at the James Cook University Hospital.

Alan and Joyce Dunn on their wedding day in 1959.

Now on the mend, Joyce, 80, and husband Alan, 80, decided to thank those who cared for her by raising funds for the coronary care unit at Sunderland Royal Hospital.

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They held a party at the Houghton Miners Welfare Hall on June 29 to celebrate their anniversary and raise money for the unit.

And the couple were delighted a number of family and friends were able to attend. Thanks to their support the party raised a total of £570 for the unit.

Former coal merchant Alan, said: “We said that once we had pulled ourselves together we would made a donation to the unit.

Alan and Joyce Dunn have celebrated the milestone by thanking hospital staff who cared for Joyce after she had a heart attack.

“As we had our diamond wedding anniversary coming up this year we thought we would put the two together and raise some money.

“It was an emotional night and everyone was so generous.

“We have now given it to the coronary care unit who have sent us a letter to thanking us for the donation.

“They really appreciated it.”

Joyce and Alan now continue to live life to the full and still attend the regular Houghton rock’n’roll night at Houghton Miners Welfare Hall, where they have made a lot of friends.